Like so many freelancers in the gig economy, a voice over artist is always on the hunt for the next voice acting job. We pretty much relinquish security for our art. No doubt about it, the actual voice acting jobs are fun and fulfilling, but a majority of our time is spent finding the next gig. So here’s a little cheat sheet to help you figure out your formula for where to find voice acting jobs.
Voice Over Agents
The majority (80%) of voice actors are going to spend more time trying to find jobs than actually doing voice over (le sigh). So, anyone who can help streamline the process frees up more time to spend auditioning. Aka an agent. Some actors think a voice over agent will be their only source of finding jobs. Although I love and value the business relationships I have with each of my agents, this has never been the case for me, nor is it for a large share of working voice actors.
Some voice over agents cover representation in multiple markets and countries, others don’t, so be sure to source the right kind. Make sure they represent your status, union or non-union, or both. You need to submit demos as well as other documents, which can put a voice over artist into a “pick me!” mentality. But keep in mind, the agency needs to work for you as much as you work for them. It should be a synergistic relationship. You can’t count on them for everything, but a good agent will supplement your career by:
- Helping to find auditions for voice over jobs that are within your skillset
- Be up to date on trends in the industry
- Negotiate contracts and act as a go-between for you and the client
You, in turn, need to remember it’s a professional relationship and you’re in the business of making money together. Treat agents with respect, be prompt with requests, communicate any absences and follow instructions in specs sent.
Find Voice Over Jobs by Being Active Online
Scour the internet for places to showcase your skills. Competition is fierce online but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t participate. Pay-to-play websites have an upfront cost so you need to make sure your online profile is strong and attention-grabbing. Include a descriptor of your voice, the types of services you offer, your studio setup, and something about yourself.
Many people recommend keeping your bio “short and sweet” and that’s good advice. A book-length biography that only briefly mentions voice over doesn’t impress, but some people translate that into one or two sentences. That is not nearly enough. Think about what sets you apart, why your particular brand of storytelling is awesome, and put it into words. Don’t waste any opportunity for a visitor to learn a bit about you.
I preface the below list by saying I know this is similar to bringing up politics or religion at a cocktail party, but I don’t recommend Upwork or Fiverr to find voice acting jobs. In general, their heartbreakingly low rates may have you chewing your own arm off.
My recommendations of the better known, legitimate pay-to-play Voice Over platforms include:
Some websites will be pay-to-play, others will let you join for free but offer more advanced paid-for features. Voiceoverfreelancer does a great breakdown on the different sites and services. And don’t forget about more traditional job market places like Craigslist, Indeed, Kijiji, and the treasure trove that is LinkedIn.
Marketing to Find Voice Acting Jobs
Marketing, marketing, and more marketing. For some, it’s a painful process. Maybe you aren’t used to talking yourself up, or maybe you think you are bothering people, but marketing is part of the business. You are trying to find people who need someone to fill their voice acting job and ensure they will be thrilled when they find you. Remember, you are running your own business, you’re a start-up, and the creative and business sides feed each other. Create a professional voice actor website that showcases your demos, brand, and client testimonials.
The best way to go about this is to try and pair interests. I like to write, so I use blogs to share information and boost SEO rankings. Know your wheelhouse. Maybe you enjoy making videos, or photography or you’re a Canva Queen. Try and find ways to merge that interest with your website, that way you’ll be more likely to enjoy marketing. You obviously enjoy voice over, so how can you turn that into traffic-driving content? Side note, never forget it’s a business, not a social endeavor, so always remain professional.
If you have discovered other places to find a voice acting job, share them here!